During a lauch of the new Roving Safety Representatives, the Labour minister said that the time has come for workers to prioritise workplace health and safety.
Labour Minister Membathisi Mdladlana told hundreds of people in Tzaneen, Limpopo on 5 October at the launch of the much awaited Roving Safety Representatives (RSR) aimed at promoting and monitoring compliance with health and safety laws by employers.
The launch took place under the theme: Health and Life at Work; A Fundamental Human Right.
The meeting was also attended by Limpopo Premier, Cassel Mathale, the Swedish based International Union Federation as well as labour federations Congress of South African Trade Unions(COSATU) and National Council of Trade Unions (NACTU).
“Marches should not only be about wages but should also include matters like health and safety in the workplace and racism,” the Minister said.
Earlier in the day Mdladlana visited a citrus farm in Tzaneen and was pleased with the level of compliance with most of the country’s labour laws.
“We should not paint all farmers with one brush, there are good farmers out there whose reputation is tarnished by the few who create unnecessary tensions,” he said.
The Minister also used the occasion to launch the new brand of inspectors’ cars that are designed to heighten their visibility. These vehicles will no doubt send a cold chill down the spines of recalcitrant employers.
The Premier applauded the Department of Labour in its efforts towards making health and safety of workers a national priority. “The fact that we are meeting here is a victory for employers and workers. We want farm workers to be treated like human beings in line with the Decent Work Agenda,” Mathale said.
Source: Department of Labour